Balsamic Green Beans

Balsamic Green Beans

We are extremely traditional at my house with our Thanksgiving meal. There has been very little room for variance from the menu that we have had for the past 30 years. The only two things that we did decide to change was 1) the stuffing/dressing and 2) how we prepared the turkey.

We went from a traditional sage stuffing to Sourdough Artichoke Parmesan Stuffing. That one is now absolutely cemented as our official Thanksgiving stuffing.

As for the turkey, other than the fact that we absolutely, positively must have turkey on Thanksgiving, there have been a number of changes over the years. We have spent a lot of time chasing after whatever the next best turkey prep method may be. It has ranged from baking it at various temperatures for various lengths of time, to the ever popular inject-your-turkey-with-obscene-amounts-of-marinade-then-burn-down-your-garage method of deep frying a turkey. A couple of years ago we started brining our turkey with a Fruit and Juice brine. Of all of the methods we have ever used, brining is our favorite. The turkey comes out beautifully moist and flavorful.

Clearly, I have gotten somewhat off track with this post. What I really wanted to say was that despite how terrific the above pictured Balsamic Green Beans tastes, we will not be having them for Thanksgiving; probably for Christmas, but not for Thanksgiving. We are completely dedicated to the green bean casserole with the cream of mushroom soup and the french fried onions. Fiercely dedicated to it, actually. We have it twice a year, Thanksgiving and Easter. Any more often than that seems incongruent with daily living.

Balsamic Green Beans

These green beans, however, would go very well with a turkey dinner. They are so easy to make that they could go with an every day chicken something dinner. Or pork something dinner. Or beef something dinner. They’d even go well with mac and cheese. Oooooooo, they would go really well with mac and cheese made with a smoky cheese. I think I’m going to have to make one of those very soon.

The main thing that you need to know about this recipe is that the green beans should be small. Guess what small green beans are called. That’s right!!!! Small green beans!

If, however, you wanted to say hericots vert, that’s okay. Hericots vert would be great in this recipe, if you can find them where you live. I cannot. No tasty, slender French green beans where I live. Nope. However, we do have some very nice small green beans from Mexico. ๐Ÿ™‚ They come nicely packaged in the fresh produce section, each bean facing in the same direction–stem ends to the right, pointy ends to the left. When I was grocery shopping they seemed to say, “buy me, buy me”, so I did. And cooked them and ate them. And so should you.

Balsamic Green Beans

Balsamic Green Beans

Recipe by Terri @ that's some good cookin'


  • 1 pound small fresh green beans
  • 3 large shallots
  • 6 strips bacon
  • rendered fat from bacon strips
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • salt, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons toasted almonds


  1. Wash green beans and trim ends. Set beans aside.
  2. Slice shallots a generous 1/8-inch thick and separate into rings. Set aside.
  3. In a deep skillet, fry bacon until crisp. Reserving rendered bacon fat in skillet, remove bacon and place on folded paper towels to drain. Crumble bacon when cool. Set aside.
  4. Add the shallots to the rendered bacon fat in skillet and saute over medium heat until just starting to turn golden. Stir frequently.
  5. Add the green beans to the shallots and stir fry for about two minutes. Add the water and balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with salt, to taste.
  6. Cover skillet and cook beans over medium heat until crisp tender. Do not over cook. Remove lid and allow beans to continue to cook until the liquid has almost cooked off, stirring as needed. There should be a small amount of cooking liquid left and the beans should be just past crisp tender (slight resistance when pierced with a fork.)
  7. Place beans in serving bowl, sprinkle with bacon crumbles and toasted almonds. Serve immediately.

Balsamic Green Beans


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  1. says

    I love these green beans!! I truly dislike that traditional green bean casserole, so this is how I would enjoy green beans any day including Thanksgiving. ๐Ÿ™‚ I baked a turkey for the blog over the weekend (had a bit of a disaster at the start), but I am definitely going to brine it next year. I was too lazy to prep it early and had to deal with the consequences of the turkey still being mostly frozen after thawing in the fridge for 3 days. LOL! It made it to the table and was actually pretty darn good… but the stress. Urgh! As much as I cook… I am a bit of a disaster in the kitchen sometimes. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I can’t end this comment without wishing you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving! Sending you a big hug!! ~ Ramona

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